Harry Ford’s goal failed to spark Newton Abbot Spurs into life on Saturday as they fell to a 4-1 defeat to Ivybridge Town, writes Josh Goodman.
Ford netted after Ivybridge were three goals to the good but a fourth was added which stemmed any inkling of a comeback. Luke Forward, Jake Lane (2) and Stanley Lane were on the score sheet for the hosts.
‘I was so despondent Saturday,’ said Spurs boss Marc Revell, ‘and I was really dejected and disappointed and feeling like I’d been let down just because of how excited I’d been through pre-season.
‘I’ve always said to not get carried away with pre-season but you can’t help feeling a buzz around the place with the new lads we’ve brought in.
‘On Saturday, we were five players down on players that would have been in my squad or team but the XI I fielded were the better side for the first 20 minutes and I was comfortable with where we were.
‘On reflection, I put it down to start-of-season stuff and teething issues with new players in the squad. They’re quite a close-knit squad and the lads I’ve brought in are all good kids but there’s just a little bit missing from the energy and hunger that I demand from them.
‘Their ‘keeper pulled off a worldie save at the start but we just don’t put teams to the sword enough when we’ve had early chances. He was under a lot of pressure at the start but then had about 70 minutes where he didn’t need to do anything.
‘We missed a chance at 3-1 down and before you know it, the lads are so despondent, and it knocked the stuffing out of them when we gave away a penalty for 4-1 and that was it.
‘There were massively mixed emotions on Saturday and I am still struggling to find many positives to take from it given how long I have worked with this group of players and how it hasn’t changed massively.
‘The attitude of the players starting out has to change. There are so many lads who have said to me that they care but they don’t show it from minute one. In the last two games we have gone 3-0 down, and that says enough.
‘If I changed it and played what could have been a stronger XI in both od those games, I still haven’t had the desire and commitment from the eight others.
‘We never start games. and if you give away an early goal you get the crowd against you and the opponents are already up for it.
‘I’ve said for ages that we are such a young, naive side and to go 1-0 down away to Ivybridge is a real test of character to get back into it.
‘Their goal was a great goal, and that got their tails up and my lads just looked deflated.
‘I’ve expected more from them.’